Thursday, May 22, 2008

Hizbu'llah Plan Sunday Rally to Commemorate the 2000 Israeli Withdrawal

"May 1948: The Catastrophe
May 2000: The Victory
25 May 2008: Celebration/Festival of Resistance and Liberation"

On its official web site (withheld) the Lebanese Shi'i political party and paramilitary organization Hizbu'llah announces a rally to be held Sunday, May 25 beginning at 6 p.m. in the Dahiyah, the southern suburbs of Beirut, a party stronghold devastated during the summer 2006 war by the Israeli airforce. The celebration (عيد), according to the announcement, will commemorate the eighth anniversary of the retreat of the Israeli army from Lebanon in the dead of night on May 24, 2000.

The day's events will also commemorate the deaths and blood (ووفاءً لدماء الشهداء) of the party's fighters (martyrs) killed in battle with the Israeli military during the latter's occupation of a large chunk of southern Lebanon from 1982 to May 24, 2000.

Hizbu'llah nasheed (religious music) video commemorating the May 2000 Israeli withdrawal/retreat from Lebanon, which the party sees as having been a great victory for its nearly 20 years of resistance and targeting of the Israeli military in Lebanon and its Lebanese proxy militia, the South Lebanon Army (militia).

SLA members, most of whom had to remain in Lebanon, were tried but most received light, token prison sentences (1-2 years or less.) The senior leaders, such as Antoine Lahad, fled to Israel. Lahad now runs a Lebanese restaurant in Tel Aviv.

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